Why saving water matters
Being water efficient not only helps to reduce water wastage but as an organisation, you pay for all the water that passes through your meter – so it makes good financial sense to ensure you are not letting any of it go to waste. Taking simple inexpensive measures can typically reduce your water consumption by up to 50%.
Saving water is also good for the environment and will help to reduce the carbon footprint of your organisation. Cleaning and treating water uses valuable energy and resources, and if water levels fall, the wildlife in wetland habitats may suffer. Also, if you are heating your water prior to use, any reduction in water consumption will also have a positive impact on your energy bills.
Calculate your water usage
As with carbon foot-printing, it is important to understand how much water you are currently using in order to reduce your impacts. The following resources are available to help you in this process:
- Water Footprint Assessment
- SME Water Footprint Calculator
- Energy Saving Trust: Water Energy Calculator
Reduce your water usage
Simple, quick measures to reduce your water usage include installing a water-butt, water-saving taps, and low-flush or dual-flush toilets. More ideas for ‘simple changes’ to help you save water and reduce leaks can be found from Waterwise and The Carbon Trust’s ‘ Energy and Water Efficiency’ guide.
Dwr Cymru offer businesses water-saving tips and a Water Efficiency Audit.
They estimate that most small businesses (or organisations) can typically achieve a 20 – 50% decrease in the amount of water they use.
Their ‘Rainscape‘ project also provides ideas and links to further resources for ‘rainscaping’ buildings; from simple rainwater collection to more ambitious projects such as green roofs. There is also information about ‘porous paving’ which is increasingly required due to recent changes in planning consents.
If you want to adopt a Water Efficiency Plan and get your staff or management team on board then WRAP’s Ripple Effect provides advice for every stage of the process from getting management support to staff buy-in, developing the business case and action plan to sharing success with stakeholders.